When the Southeast Area Farmers’ Market opens Saturday June 1 at Gerald R Ford Middle School, a new market manager will be on site. However, market patrons will recognize OKT’s Roni VanBuren. She has been helping with set up, special events, operations and just about every other task associated with running the market for the past two tears.
VanBuren received her Farmers’ Market manager certification in 2012 from The Michigan Farmers Market Association(MIFMA). She completed their comprehensive Farmers’ Market Training Program in Lansing over the course of eight, day-long sessions covering Business Planning and Market Growth Management; Human Relations and Conflict Management; Market Governance, Rules and Enforcement; Fundraising; and Marketing and Outreach. A final manager-to-manager education and networking opportunity completed the program focusing on sharing experiences and lessons learned.
Former market manager, Yvonne Woodard (also MIFMA certified), is also stepping into a new role with OKT. While she will continue at the farmers’ market as a vendor and peer educator, Woodard has also taken on the role of garden coach with OKT’s yard gardening program.